Well written but you did not escape the newbie POV. You need exc items with good options to go into CC - where the reward are high... You need ancient items to maximize what you could get in DS. Medal might give you a great +11 set with considerable defense but you will eventually experience the lack of damage and stagnation in farming. On the jewels drop, I burnt every single jewels I picked... luck option in this server is lower than the rest, making items +9 is quite a pain in the ass. Making wings burnt a lot of jewels as well, you could not get far without a decent wing 2.
It's true that new player wants to have fun and decent gameplay but only at first... the nature of MMO is competitive, you could not have fun if you could not enjoy the events of the game (DS,BC,CC...), could not enjoy the loot - get slaughtered during WW, rabbit, golden invasion or join a decent Guild. Notwithstanding what I said, you got some notable points.
Furthermore, every servers got some butt-hurt players, I buy items from top people all the time... honest and decency get you far... and I am lucky to get a Vicious set in the 1st month here but I know not everyone is as lucky. Someone I know try to get gaion set for months and willing to play hundred of jewels and tier 1 ancients for it. The demand are high leading to the somewhat equivalent price. Just sit back and enjoy the game. You will crave for jewels and items soon enough,